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10 things you need to know today: October 30, 2012
Hurricane Sandy slams the Northeast, UBS fires 10,000 bankers, and more in our roundup of the stories that are making news and driving opinion
 
A person tries to cross the street in Atlantic City, N.J., on Oct. 29 as Sandy bears down on the East Coast.
A person tries to cross the street in Atlantic City, N.J., on Oct. 29 as Sandy bears down on the East Coast.
Zhang Jun/Xinhua Press/Corbis

1. HURRICANE SANDY BATTERS THE NORTHEAST
Hurricane Sandy hammered New York and New Jersey with high winds and a record-breaking storm surge on Monday, killing at least 16 people and leaving six million without power. In New York City, bridges remained closed Tuesday and seven subway tunnels under the East River were flooded. Surging water knocked out backup power at NYU Langone Medical Center, forcing the evacuation of patients. Towns along the New Jersey shore were devastated. "The ocean is in the road, there are trees down everywhere," one resident said. "I've never seen it this bad." With tropical storm force winds extending nearly 500 miles from the storm's eye, Sandy downed trees from the Carolinas to Canada. As the tropical system clashed with winter weather from the west and north, it dumped snow as far south as North Carolina. Early Tuesday, Sandy headed inland, downgraded to a post-tropical cyclone as its winds slowed to 65 mph and it headed for the eastern Great Lakes. [New York Times]
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2. STORM FORCES CHANGES TO 2012 CAMPAIGNS
As Hurricane Sandy hit the Northeast, President Obama hunkered down to monitor the storm and sent First Lady Michelle Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, and former President Bill Clinton to fill in for him on the campaign trail. Mitt Romney canceled some events Monday and Tuesday "out of sensitivity for the millions of Americans" in the so-called Frankenstorm's path, an advisor said, and when he returns to the stump in the key swing state of Ohio he'll devote an event to hurricane relief. The rivals appear tied in polls just days ahead of the Nov. 6 election. When asked how the storm might impact the vote, Obama said: "Right now, our number one priority is to make sure we are saving lives." [Politico, Washington Post]
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3. UBS SLASHES 10,000 JOBS WORLDWIDE
The giant Swiss bank UBS has announced plans to fire 10,000 bankers all over the world — 15 percent of its workforce — as it scales back its trading business, which lost $50 billion in the financial crisis. A single suspected rogue trader blew $2.3 billion last year. The cuts will save the company $3.6 billion and mark one of the biggest eliminations of financial jobs since Lehman Brothers collapsed in 2008. [Reuters]
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4. APPLE SHAKES UP MANAGEMENT
In the aftermath of its embarrassing mapping app debacle, Apple announced the departure of two senior executives, including head of iOS software Scott Forstall, who was responsible for the widely panned app. John Browett, head of retail, is also leaving. Apple came under a heavy barrage of criticism over the mapping software, and CEO Tim Cook wound up issuing an apology to customers. Forstall will serve as an adviser to Cook until leaving next year. Sir Jonathan Ive, who's in charge of designing Apple hardware, will now oversee the team developing its software, as well. [BBC News]
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5. NEW DUTCH COALITION PLEDGES AUSTERITY
Two Dutch centrist parties have struck a deal to form a new coalition government and impose sweeping spending cuts similar to the ones that caused the previous government to collapse. After 47 days of negotiations following their wins in September elections, the center right Liberal Party and the left-leaning Labor Party agreed to stick with the austerity plan and try to balance the budget. Leaders of the two parties said they would work to save the European Union and the euro, but that only countries willing to "fix their financial problems and strengthen their economies" should get outside help. [Wall Street Journal]
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6. CREW MEMBER DIES AS SANDY SINKS TALL SHIP
A woman who was sailing on a replica of the HMS Bounty was pronounced dead after being plucked from raging seas in a daring helicopter rescue. Fourteen other crew members were rescued, but the captain of the ship remained missing early Tuesday. The three-mast ship, which was built for the 1962 film Mutiny on the Bounty, had been bound for Florida, trying to sail around Hurricane Sandy as the storm headed north through the Atlantic. The 180-foot vessel apparently capsized in 18-foot waves as the crew tried to get into life boats off North Carolina. Claudene Christian, 42, and the captain were the only ones who didn't make it into the rafts. [BBC News]
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7. IRANIAN SHIPS REPORTED IN SUDAN
Two Iranian warships reportedly have docked in Port Sudan in a show of "support and friendship" less than a week after the bombing of a weapons factory in Khartoum, according to Sudanese state media. The east African country has blamed the bombing, which killed two people, on Israel. The Israeli government has declined to comment, and no one has claimed responsibility for the attack. [CNN]
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8. HAITI MISERY SPREADS DAYS AFTER SANDY
In impoverished Haiti, reports of destruction from Hurricane Sandy have continued trickling out for days since the storm hit, with the death toll rising to 52 this week. Nearly three years after the earthquake that devastated the Caribbean nation, 370,000 people are still living in tent cities, and the storm left an estimated 18,000 families in the camps homeless once again. "We are hungry, things for me are bad, our tarp is torn," one woman said. "It's misery." [Washington Post]
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9. MARKETS CLOSE FOR SECOND DAY DUE TO STORM
With storm-ravaged New York City paralyzed, the nation's stock and bond markets will remain closed for a second straight day on Tuesday after Hurricane Sandy crashed through Wall Street. Trading was called off in the nation's financial center in lower Manhattan on Monday, in the first shutdown due to weather in 27 years, and the longest shutdown in more than a century. Now the markets' operators will focus on trying to open for business on Wednesday, which is a key trading day because it marks the end of the month, when traders price portfolios. [Reuters]
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10. FRONTMAN'S REHAB DERAILS GREEN DAY TOUR
Green Day has canceled a tour of North American clubs and postponed shows in January and February so that the band's frontman, Billie Joe Armstrong, can focus on treatment for substance abuse. "Obviously, the timing for this isn't ideal," says bassist Mike Dirnt, "but Billie Joe’s well-being is our main concern." Armstrong began rehab days after an expletive-filled on-stage meltdown in September. [Los Angeles Times]

 

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